Alaska Justice Forum 18(2), Summer 2001

Alaska Justice Forum 18(2), Summer 2001

"Emmonak Juveniles and the Elders' Group"

Since 1999, the Emmonak Elders' Group Project has handled certain non-felony juvenile cases in the village of Emmonak, a predominately Yup'ik community on the Yukon Delta of western Alaska. The project permits youth to remain within the community while their offenses are adjudicated through the body of elders – thus avoiding formal justice system processing which usually entails removal from the village. Youths are held accountable within the context of the local community and its traditions. This article describes the results of an initial evaluation of the program in early 2001, after the court had been in operation for approximately a year and a half. The evaluation comprised a review of program files, direct observations of meetings, discussions with community residents and interviews with parents and juveniles. It primarily focused on project implementation: how the court was established, its procedures, and the working relationships among institutions and individual participants.

"Statistics on Alaska Traffic Fatalities" by G. Blair McCune

In the last year, a series of alcohol-related traffic fatalities in Alaska has again focused legislative and public attention on the DWI issue. However, numbers compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation show a marked decrease in the total number of traffic fatalities in general in Alaska since 1975, while over the same period, Alaska's population increased significantly. There has also been a notable decrease in the percentage of fatal traffic accidents with anyone showing a high blood alcohol level.